The fall out from Sunday’s All-Ireland semi final shows no signs of letting up. Cork selector and legendary goalkeeper Ger Cunningham is the latest senior hurling figure to admit to being left cold by Tipperary’s bizarre tactics against Kilkenny.
He told the Irish Times that many hurling tacticians and strategists are still bewildered by Tipperary’s decision to have Lar Corbett shadow Tommy Walsh for the entire 70 minutes.
“I suppose people are just trying to come to terms with it really – the situation where one of the best forwards of the last couple of years is running around after a defender. It caught everyone by surprise. Is it going to be a trend? Hopefully not,” he said.
Most managers are looking to develop new ideas and strategies to gain a competitive edge but Cunningham hopes that Sunday’s strange turn of events won’t be copied on training fields the length and breadth of the country.
“Everyone is trying to find their own little niche and their own little tactic. It’s a results-driven game at this stage and people are looking at different tactics. Every team is trying something. Maybe in the past it was just letting it flow and I suppose Sunday was probably something we hadn’t contemplated or hadn’t seen before and took it to a new level.”
Cunningham also said that he was mystified by Tipperary’s decision to persist with Corbett’s tight marking of Walsh in the second half, long after it was clear the game was slipping away from them and it wasn’t working.
“Every manager will try and come up with a different tactic and will see how it works but it was obvious after 10 or 15 minutes that it wasn’t going to work even though Tommy was out of the game and so was Lar, because he was anonymous really. You would imagine that if something wasn’t working you would change it and it took them a long time to look at it and change it,” he added.